Author: Me :)
Summary: Looking down at my hands, all I can see is blood.
Author's Note: For a change, here's a Peter Bishop fic. It's set after Marionette and shows a rather dark side of Peter, so don't expect some fluffy-puffy-let's-talk-about-it-and-all-i
Looking down at my hands, all I can see is blood. Crusted scarlet bits clinging to my fingers, my hands, my clothes, burning my skin like fire. It isn't mine. Not that it matters because I am hurting nonetheless. Not on the outside, but on the inside. The pain has become so unbearable, tearing at me every second of the day that this had been inevitable.
The hallway around me is dark and empty. Eerie silence envelops me as I look up at the door in front of me. I never really realized how bright those apartment numbers were, even in the dark. Never noticed it, not all the times I've ever stood here, hand up the air, ready to knock. 2A. I have stood here so many times before, knocking at some of the most inappropriate times of the day.
But I am not going to knock today. Not looking like this. I don't even remember how I got here in the first place. A snort escapes my lips. I think it's funny, in a way, that even after all that has happened, this is still where I come. But then, where else would I go? There is no one else for me to talk to. No one who understands me. No one.
I lower my eyes, painfully aware of all the sorrow I have caused. There it is again. All that blood, on my skin, staining my clothes. Again, it's not mine. Though, right now, I kind of wish it was. I am startled by a noise from inside the apartment. My head shoots up in time to see the door swing open in front of me. 3AM. I should have known that she isn't sleeping. Every day when she comes into the lab, I can see the dark circles around her eyes. And every time I am reminded again just how much pain I have caused her.
She is standing there, dressed for a jog in the cold weather outside. And she is just looking at me. Her eyes fill with horror when she notices all the blood, but she doesn't say a word. She just stares at me, and I can't help but turn my head away. Her eyes, haunted, darker inside. Those are her eyes. I should have seen that from the beginning, but I hadn't. I am ashamed. I am angry. Which, again, brings me to the blood on my hands.
"I killed my father," I whisper.
When I look up, I can see her rubbing her nose with the palms of her hands. That's what she always does when she's confused. It's her tell, the little thing that lets me know that I caught her off guard even though she doesn't want me to know. She shakes her head at me silently and takes a step back into the apartment. She has every right to be scared of me. After all, for the last few weeks I have plotted to kill a man. My father. And tonight, I pulled the trigger.
If someone told me a year ago that one day, I'd become an assassin, I would have sent them right to the looney bin. I may have been a con man, true, but never a killer. Never. After what he had done to me though, what he had done to Olivia... well, it had changed everything.
I still remember the very first moment when those thoughts crossed my mind. Anger, rage, I needed someone to blame. I could have blamed myself, and trust me, I did and still do. But there was more to this than just my inability to see past the surface. There was the fact that he had sent her over here. The fact that he had kept Olivia over there. He had ordered her to use me for his benefit while on the other side, he had tortured Olivia. She has taken everything from Olivia. He has taken everything from me. And for that, I hate him more than anything.
Once a con man, always a con man. Sending the message was easy. "I know how to work the device. I need to come home." I still don't understand why he fell for it. Maybe we weren't so different after all. Olivia was and still is what I always wanted. That clouded my judgement. The machine was what he wanted.
I drop my hands to my sides, rubbing them against my jeans. I am trying to get rid off the dried blood. I can feel it branding me for my sins... for all eternity. I need to rid myself of it, need to free myself of the last reminder of what I have done. Frantically, I move them up and down my sides and it's starting to hurt so badly. Inside and out. The realization is slowly setting in. I have killed a man.
I don't notice Olivia stepping closer to me until I feel her hands on top of mine, stilling my movements. Slowly, she pulls up my hands, and my eyes follow. That is when I notice the tears in the corner of her eyes. And I immediately know that she is not crying because of me. She is crying for me.
Two days ago, when I was waiting in Battery Park for extraction, my mind was filled with anger and rage. Day and night, all I could think of was Olivia crying, telling me that she couldn't be with me. He had to pay for that. He had to pay for everything he had done to us. I had never really believed that revenge was a solution to any problem - until I had been faced with this. Walternate was the ultimate evil. And I am his son. If my father was capable of being so vicious, so could I. Or so I thought.
Olivia had said that I was the only thing that got her through when she was trapped on the other side. Today, I understand what she meant by that. I had kept her sane. She did the same for me. She is my lifeline, my one constant. Every smile that crossed my face while on the other side, it was for her. Every bit of schmoozing I did to convince my father I was home for good, it was for her. Every silent laughter, assuring me that he was going to pay for what he had done, it was for her.
I vaguely remember pointing the gun at him. What I do remember though is the sensation of the cold metal of the trigger beneath my finger. The fury that was raging through my body. And the bitterness and maliciousness in my voice as I kept repeating "this is for what you have done to Olivia, for what you have done to me, to us" over and over again. I don't remember actually pulling the trigger or the sound of the shot echoing through the office. The next thing I remember is looking at my hands, covered with blood.
I could have gone for the head, but that would have been just a bit too easy. He made us suffer, so he had to suffer as well. I was standing by his side as he sat in his chair. Blood was pooling from the wound in his chest. I don't think I will ever forget his eyes as he stared at me. The look my dying father gave me was one of betrayal, of disappointment, of rage. His hands reached out for me, pulling me closer. I remember trying to push him away, feeling the stickiness of warm blood on my hands. The grip he had on me was strong, and I fought him. I fought him hard but I couldn't escape him. I never could, could I? "That's my son," he spat at me, blood erupting from his mouth. Those words will haunt me for the rest of my life. Yes, I definitely am my father's son. I allowed my vengeance to get the better of me.
My legs give way under me and I drop to the floor on my knees. Olivia is still holding on to my hands tightly, so I pull her down with me. Tears are filling my eyes, and as much as I want to hold them back, I can't anymore. As the first hot tear trickles down my cheek, it stings. By the time the second and third spill from my eyes, I don't feel them anymore. All I feel is the pain inside.
And then I feel her fingers on my skin as they brush away one tear, then another. She is gentle with me, and for the first time in weeks, I see a faint smile on her face that I know is for me. It's her way of letting me know that things are going to be okay without saying a word. It has always been like that between us, and I am glad that even after all that happened, this hasn't changed.
I'm a mess, I have been for quite some time, but what I have done tonight, it has set me free. My single intention when crossing over was to seek revenge. I have gotten my vengeance with a bang. My father is dead. I have probably fueled the war between the universes even more. No, I know I have. Crossing over, killing my father, crossing back - yes, I most definitely have.
Tonight, I don't care about any of that anymore. Because I am here now, here with her. The woman I love. She is holding me in her arms as I cry against her shoulder. She may not have forgiven me, but it's a start. I showed her that she means more to me than this universe... or the other. I would kill for her. And I have.